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Old 09-09-2010, 08:57 PM   #1
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Now I'm a little nervous

Hi everyone,

My wife and I are implementing all of the many steps to become fulltimers in about 18 months. We have decided on a fifth wheel and have been doing a lot of research. New Horizons has risen easily to the top three companies we are considering.

I know this is a forum for solving problems, but some of the posts I've read ranging from system problems, fit and finish, and even factory service have really surprised me. There seem to be some serious issues considering the high end product. Is this typical for any RV manufacturer? Is everyone here still delighted with their purchase and will you purchase another NH fifth wheel next time. Any and all feedback will be greatly appreciated. At this point, we're trying to read every website and book ever written!

I'm not trying to be provacative at all. We're just trying to figure out where the highest quality that fits our needs might be found.

Thanks and cheers from Napa Valley!
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Old 09-10-2010, 07:34 AM   #2
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First of all, I love the monaker, "Winemaker". Just the thought of a winemaker who is in their 5th wheel traveling around the country making wine is exciting. I am more of a wine consumer however their was a time in my life when I was a home-winemaker.

I got my NH in 2007 and for the most part I have been very pleased with the unit that I have. I suspect that every make of trailer will have some issues. Some issues are more troubling than others. Where NH stands out is in the quality of the basic frame of the unit. I have had service people who look at my unit and comment as to how well it is put together. These are people who see many different trailers. So I take their word as a very positive comment.

For any trailer you have to remember that you are taking it across a lot of roads that are not the smoothest; so all units will get a fair share of jolts and bouncing. This is inherent with all trailers. Therefore it will not be a surprise for some things to show wear or to need replacing. The NH product tends to hold together pretty well. I have known some owners who have had particular issues that have been of concern to them such as screws along the seam of the unit which have rusted out and some workmanship issues that may not be as high a quality as one would desire.

All in all, I can say that I would not hesitate ordering another NH unit.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:43 PM   #3
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Thanks for dropping by the forum and expressing your concerns and making the inquiry.

Considering the trailer vs fiver vs Class A coach vs Class C RV, you have already made a serious decision and opted on the fiver.

Adding to what Mike has already mentioned, there are lots of manufacturers out there. Some units are made with plastic, pressed board and aluminum or light weight steel. Others like the New Horizon are made with solid wood and heavy steel.

Another tool you might consider adding to your decision making is the RV consumers group (http://rv.org/) ratings. Those ratings are based on construction -- nothing about maintenance.

As the moderator/administrator of these forums, I take a very light hand to comments and posts. I've edited only one in these years of my tenure. I've been told that is not the situation in all user forums.

The bad part is that it seems most people are all too ready to share the negatives and do not take the time to give the accolades. Less than 1000 units of New Horizons have been manufactured since its beginning in 1989. There are about 350 on the NHOG Forum email list. The registrations at this forum is 195 (with your registration). Of that 195, only 25 have posted more than five times. Another fifty posted one to five times. Just a couple of negative posts can make things look pretty bad when there may be 900 positive stories.

This Wandrin Wagon is my second fiver from New Horizons. There was a journey back to Junction City for minor maintenance repairs on both units.

It is appropriate to mention, that Wandrin Wagon is a "hard sided tent". Not too much can go wrong when there is no slide, no furnace, no awning, no microwave or any of the many other options that are available. A single guy can do that.

As I head to Palm Springs, the travel route is open to whims and changes in plans. My tentative plans include Sacramento area and west to Petaluma. If you are interested in a personal visit and tour of the Wandrin Wagon, perhaps we can make that happen. Send me an email: lloyd@wandrin.us
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Old 09-10-2010, 01:34 PM   #4
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Our Experience with New Horizon.

We have had our rig for almost two years. Both our rig and the Junction City New Horizon group has been good.

The few initial problems were solved to our satisfaction.

As we travel around visiting with other full timers, we find that most have had far more and much more serious problems than we have had, and that they have had a great deal more difficulty in getting fixes.

Structurally the New Horizon trailer is rock solid. It has a massive frame and the floor, sides, roof are sturdy. I am a very large person and I can wonder around on the roof with impunity.

If we bought a new rig today, it would be another New Horizon.

Happy trails,
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:42 PM   #5
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Winemaker:

Every RV manufacturer has its share of problems. As Lloyd has said, because we are a small group and not one with a very active participation, the problems may assume greater apparent significance than if we had many more people posting how much we love our units. Ultimately, many of us come here seeking answers to questions that we think other owners of similar units might be able to provide. I wouldn't attach too much significance to the proportion of negative posts -- as in many other arenas, squeaky wheels get much more attention than those that are running smoothly!

We have had our fifth wheel almost 5 years and have put close to 30,000 traveling miles on it. We have had minor problems but nothing that would cause us to decide to trade it in on another make. We would not hesitate to buy another New Horizons. Is the company perfect? No. Do we have issues with some aspects of the company? Yes. But ultimately, the personal contact that each and every one of us has with the factory, from workers on the line right up to the owners, means that we can be heard if our issues are sufficiently serious to affect our comfort, safety and satisfaction. I'm not sure that is true of many manufacturers.

Good luck with your search. Regardless of which unit you ultimately decide to buy, I know you'll have a wonderful journey ahead of you.

Margaret Wright and Ian McKee
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Old 09-14-2010, 06:46 AM   #6
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Winemaker - In looking at the timing of your decision to move toward full-timing, let me point out to you that the New Horizon Owners Group (NHOG) will be having a Rally at the end of October 2011. If you want to see a number of units and speak to their owners it is a great opportunity for "Wannabes". Persons who are seriously looking at the New Horizon product are welcome to attend. It can be a very informative time. So, if you have interest, put the date on your calendar. The Rally will be held at the Blueberry Hill RV Resort in Bushnell, FL.
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Old 09-16-2010, 08:53 PM   #7
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Winemaker:

I won't belabor the point by repeating what has said by others. We are on our second NH 5th wheel. We were not planning to replace our 2006, but after a couple of years, decided on the spur of the moment while at the factory last year to have a new one made - same layout, but with a couple of extra features that we did not have on the first one and a couple of adjustments to improve a couple of things. The problems we have had have been promptly address by the factory and to our satisfaction. Our local RV service people and others that we have met in our travels all agree that the NH product is extremely well built and durable in comparison to others on the market.

After much research we originally went with New Horizons not only for their construction and features, but also because we could get a unit custom designed for not much more than others we had considered - and get one that was better constructed.

Good luck with your research and decisions.
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:46 PM   #8
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I have had my 30' NH since 2006 and have been full timing in it. Yes NH have a few problems but compared to the horror stories I have heard about other brands NH has no problems to speak of. My problems have been minor ones and promptly attended to by the factory.
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:58 PM   #9
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We purchased my 2005 NH fiver used, and we just completed our first (20 week) travel season. My five years of research included buying the RV Consumer Group (RVCG) package of resources. Of course, they give NH their highest rating. Armed with the knowledge imparted by the RVCG books and CDs, I critically examined dozens of examples of mainstream trailers at RV shows and dealer lots. With flashlight and inspection mirror in hand, I crawled under these trailers and peered into every accessible space. On close examination, the poor quality of workmanship and materials on virtually all the non-NH units was shocking. Particularly in those places that they don't expect prospective buyers to look, things were tacked together, and I could see that failures were inevitable. Conversely, when I spent six hours discovering every tiny wart on the used 2005 NH unit that I ultimately purchased, I was impressed by the fact that NH had clearly tried to build a more durable product than do the mainstream trailer manufacturers.

By way of advice, if I were designing a new unit, I wouldn't hesitate to order the automatic levelling system that my trailer lacks. Too, if you will do any boondocking (even the odd night at Walmart while travelling from point A to point B), I would suggest you include a "whole house" inverter/charger. To support the inverter, and to facilitate boondocking generally, you'll want a substantial solar charging system and four storage batteries. I don't plan to retrofit an automatic levelling system, but I did add the inverter/charger, additional solar panels for the existing system (now 4x 100 watt), and installed four 6v GC2-size wet batteries (sealed 12v batteries work fine, too). Thus far, we have not wanted for power, even when boondocking for a week at a time while watching television/DVDs several hours each day. On sunny days in the warm season, we've been able to run the 10 cf fridge and 10 gallon water heater from the inverter when our other needs are minimal, thus saving propane.

In summary, while not perfect, my NH trailer will be more durable than virtually all the mainstream brands. If I were to need a new trailer, I would ignore mainstream brands, and most probably I would get another NH trailer. Lastly, I believe everyone that is shopping for any type of RV needs to buy the RV Consumer Group resources. I hate spending money, but the RVCG stuff provided an education in the hands-on critical examination of design and build quality that the internet couldn't. Al.
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Old 05-04-2011, 12:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by almunro View Post
I hate spending money, but the RVCG stuff provided an education in the hands-on critical examination of design and build quality that the internet couldn't. Al.
As a potential buyer, I find this comment enlightening. I also hate spending money unnecessarily, but Iím willing to do so if thatís what it takes to get the job done. That sums up the reasons why my wife and I are now considering a New Horizons.

I have been disappointed for years over the lack of construction quality in todayís travel trailers. My choices are narrowing down to either buying a New Horizons or continuing with the frustrations offered by the other brands.

America had better watch out if the Japanese ever decide to enter our RV market.

Ė Loren
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Old 05-06-2011, 11:29 AM   #11
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Red face

We have a 39' 2009 New Horizons with five slides and a rear kitchen. We did a lot of research prior to deciding to go with New Horizons. We liked that we could customize our unit to include tons of storage space but even more than that we liked the quality of the build and the peace of mind that comes with dealing with the folks at New Horizons. Just as with a new sticks and bricks home, minor issues will pop up and the folks and support at NH have been tremendous.

We know folks with 5ers that cost almost as much who have had frame problems, slide problems, etc. that their manufacturer would not cover.

Additionally, the NH warranty covers you as a full timer; very few other manufacturers do that.

Hope to see you at the rally. Good luck in your decision.
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:05 PM   #12
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My only comment would be that most posters only do so when they have an issue and are looking for an answer. Some feel it necessary to slam a manufacturer if/when they feel wronged. Not many people will simply post a positive comment unless asked for it. This appears to be the case with all the forums I visit, not just here.

So while you will see many posts from folks who are having issues, consider weighing that against how many units there are in service.

I too am looking for a new 5er in the next 1-3 years. We've been fulltime for 3 years now and my list of what I want keeps growing. We are seriously considering a NH and we are saving our pennies.
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Old 05-12-2011, 09:51 AM   #13
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K-Star & Winemaker: Hope you'll be able to come to the rally scheduled at Bushness, FL in October. It's not just for owners but also for those who are thinking of buying.
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Old 07-20-2011, 07:59 AM   #14
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Hello, I am new to this thing...planning to retire in about 4 years and go fulltime with the 45 or 48 ft NH double bedroom 5th wheel...there will be 3 of us. All info so far has NH at the top of the list. Any pointers?...feel free to send info....Thanks, 3 Blind Mice. (Miami, FL)
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